So has Florida Governor Charlie Crist done himself any political harm among Republican voters, after he hit the trail with President Obama to support the stimulus bill?
The answer, according to the new Quinnipiac poll in Florida, is not at all.
The poll says that in the open Senate race for the seat of retiring GOP Senator Mel Martinez, Crist could easily win a Republican primary, if he runs — he’s ahead of his nearest potential opponent by 53%-13%. And there are even more numbers that suggest GOP voters aren’t holding his stimulus support against him.
Crist has an overall job approval of 67%, to 22% disapproval, essentially unchanged from the 65%-24% numbers a month ago. Among Republican voters only, Crist is at 71%-21% — again, pretty much the same as last month’s 72%-19%.
So if Crist has thus far not paid any political price for backing the stimulus, this invites an important question: Would there have been any real political risk at all if other Republicans who are otherwise popular at home had supported the bill?